When Joanna Kerr insisted in a honey-smoke voice that she didn't need protection, Alex Tanner drew closer, welcoming her resistance. There was little satisfaction in easy conquest, and something in her cool eyes tempted him to melt her ladylike facade, to make her sizzle with desire. He'd agreed to guard the daughter of a powerful man when fate made her the pawn in her brother's risky gambit, but once he'd touched Joanna, passion whipped like live current between them. Alex was possessed, obsessed by her soft, hot skin, like satin on fire, but even as she felt his lips brand her flesh with primal need. Joanna wanted to flee. She'd dreamed of a knight who'd rescue her and keep her safe, but this man was peril in the flesh and irresistible. Loving him made her yearn to know herself and what she wanted, but could she afford to believe that he'd catch her when she fell into his arms?